A new study shows Young Women are at a Higher Risk for Fatal Alcohol-related Car Accidents. Alcohol related accidents are killing and injuring countless people across the nation, with recent studies showing over 30 people die each day and dozens more are sustaining terrible injuries. Those willing to get behind the wheel while being intoxicated are not only putting their own lives at risk but also the lives of innocent drivers and pedestrians. An alarming new study shows that those who drink and get behind the wheel, and are at higher risk for a fatal accident, are young women. One reason behind this may be the fact that women and men metabolize alcohol much differently. Several factors are responsible for this, including that on average women weigh less than men. Also, alcohol disperses in water, and if you are taking weight into account, a woman has less water in their body than a man. In addition, a woman’s body absorbs more alcohol than a man’s body does, meaning it takes her body longer to break the alcohol down and remove it from the system. With these facts, it is clear to see that if a man and a woman drink the same amount of alcohol, a woman will have higher levels of alcohol in her blood, and the side effects of the alcohol will appear faster and take longer to diminish.
This new study shows an incredible shift compared to studies from 1996. Statistics from that year showed men having twice the risk of fatal car accidents as women who had the same levels of alcohol in their blood. By 2007, researchers say the gap closed between men and women, but were unable to pinpoint the reason behind it. One leading researcher behind this new study, Robert Voas of the Pacific Institute for Research and Evaluation in Maryland, was interviewed for an article in the Journal of Studies on Alcohol and Drugs. He stated that young women may be beginning to behave more like young men who drink and get behind a wheel.
The study also compared blood alcohol levels and age range, and how they factored in to fatal car accidents. The survey’s conclusion established that regardless of age, drivers at risk for being killed or involved in a fatal alcohol related car accident increased as their blood alcohol levels did. In addition, the study showed that drivers who were between 16 and 20 years old with a blood alcohol level up to .049% have a three times higher risk of playing a role in a fatal alcohol related crash than their sober counterparts.
Furthermore, experts believe drinking and driving plus texting is another large factor playing a role in these recent statistics. Experts feel it is imperative for young women to not only better understand the risks behind texting and driving, but also how adding alcohol to the mix can substantially increase their odds for a fatal car crash. In addition, it is crucial for young women to understand how alcohol is processed and metabolized differently in the female body and how the effects of alcohol will last longer, even though they may be drinking the same amount as their male friends. Researchers behind this new study are hoping this information can be the difference between life and death for young women in America.
If you or a loved one needs help with abuse and/or treatment, please call the WhiteSands Treatment at (877) 855-3470. Our addiction specialists can assess your recovery needs and help you get the addiction treatment that provides the best chance for your long-term recovery.